Logo Doctoral Certificate Program in Agricultural Economics Deutsch
Course of Study

Module 3000
Integrated land use modelling


Erwin Schmid (erwin.schmid@boku.ac.at), Martin Schönhart, Hermine Mitter, Mathias Kirchner

Course Description:

The course aims at strengthening skills in advanced land use optimization modelling by integrating disciplinary concepts, data, methods and scenarios. The students shall be able to build bottom-up land use optimisation models at farm to landscape scale as well as at regional to global scale and to perform integrated impact analysis of climate change, trade, and policy on agricultural land use, production and environment.

Course Outline:

  1. Basic concepts of integrated land use modelling
    • Introduction to integrated land use modelling
      • Model types, research aims and contexts
      • Typical structure of integrated quantitative land use studies
      • Model linkages and interfaces: bio-physical simulation models, bottom-up land use optimization models, PE, CGE, I/O models, etc.
      • Impact chains in land use models
    • Scenario development
      • Representative Concentration Pathways (RCPs)
      • Shared Socio-economic Pathways (SSPs)
      • Price, market, policy forecasts /projections /baselines
    • Tools and concepts to facilitate integrated land use model development
      • Generic model development
      • Organization of data transformation, processing and model integration
      • Concept of homogenous response units
      • Linking and analysing bio-physical and economic land use data
    • Integrated land use indicators
      • Economic indicators
      • Biotic and abiotic environmental indicators
      • Biodiversity assessment
      • Landscape assessment
      • Ecosystem service indicators
  2. Stakeholder participation in land use modelling
    • Transdisciplinary theory
    • Stakeholder communication
  3. Applied land use model building and analysis with GAMS
    • Examples of land use models at different scales
      • Field, farm and landscape modelling
      • Regional to global land use modelling
    • Use of grid-computing facilities
  4. Sensitivity and uncertainty analysis
    • Basic concepts of uncertainty in quantitative land use modelling
    • Monte Carlo Simulation
    • Surface Response Function Estimation
  5. Reporting
    • Scientific paper preparation

Teaching Method:

Lectures (30%), exercises (30%), seminar (40%)

Grading: seminar paper (80%), participation (20%). Registered participants will get an graded certificate from BOKU as well as the certification of participation in the ”Doctoral Certificate Program in Agricultural Economics”.

Credit points: 3 ECTS, Category: Empirics

Language: English

Prerequisites: Basics in GAMS, R, mathematical programming, regression analysis, and scientific writing.

Software: GAMS, R


The course is held at BOKU University, Vienna, in one week. The course will take place in March or April. To participate in the course it is necessary to register at the Promotionskolleg Agrarökonmik AND at BOKU. You will receive detailed instructions on how to register at BOKU a month before the start of the module by email.